Macron Isn’t Really Withdrawing From West Africa

Drawing on the War on Terror’s model of drones and special forces deployments, the French government is keeping troops on the ground in Africa.

French soldiers prepare their armored vehicles for special operations with Task Force Takuba at the Menaka military base in Mali, December 2021. Takuba is a French-led multinational military task force of 14 European countries — consisting of 800 soldiers from France, Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, and Czechia — assisting the Malian Armed Forces in the Liptako region of West Africa. As French troops withdraw, the future of Takuba is unclear (Getty Images).

On February 17, French president Emmanuel Macron announced the withdrawal of his country’s forces from Mali, following a humiliating breakdown in relations with the ruling junta in Bamako and the failure of the French military to combat an Islamist insurgency in the Sahel. The announcement caused consternation in the motley collection of European forces still […]

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